Heart disease has been the #1 cause of death worldwide for the last century. Medicine has been battling this disease for decades, and has made great advances, like bypass surgeries, stents, and a whole industry of medications. But despite all this, we are still losing the battle against heart disease.
On January 24, 2011, the American Heart Association completed a report on heart disease prevalence and cost projections over the next two decades. In 2010, 80 million American adults (30% of the adult population) were found to have heart disease. The cost of treating these individuals was $272.5 billion. The American Heart Association went on to project that, in 2030, 116 million American adults (40% of adults) would have heart disease, with treatment costing $818.1 billion per year.
According to this projection, in 20 years, we will be spending three times as much to fight heart disease, yet more people than ever will suffer from the disease. Something is clearly wrong with this picture. Heart disease continues to be a frequent topic of debate because our flawed approach to treating the disease is putting a stop to it.
Below are a few questions that Dr. Boone was recently asked about heart health, etc. Read what he has to say…
Q – How does the heart relate to overall well being?
Dr. Boone’s Answer – “Heart disease is a unique disease in that you don’t necessarily feel bad as it develops and worsens. Often, the first sign of heart disease in an individual is heart attack, stroke, or sudden death. However, the heart is central to all of the body’s many complex systems. Therefore, good diet, frequent exercise, and stress management are all crucial to maintaining good cardiovascular health, and are also contributors to overall well being.”
Q – What are some key things to pay attention to when it comes to individual Heart Health?
All of the standard indicators are still quite important, such as family history, lifestyle, diet, history of smoking, alcohol use, and cholesterol level.
Dr. Boone’s Answer – “However, we now have more advanced tools to identify an individual’s risk for heart disease. Advanced blood tests now give us sophisticated measurements of cholesterol particle size and number, searching for underlying genetic issues unique to each individual. Advanced imaging techniques can identify the “breeding ground” for dangerous plaque that could eventually lead to heart attack or stroke. With these issues identified, we can aggressively treat the inflammation before it ever leads to an adverse event.